Showing posts with label Lesbos. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Lesbos. Show all posts

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Massive Fire in Pope's Immigrant Camp: Arson Suspected

About 3,000 residents of Moria camp are homeless on Lesbos - situation risks due to precarious conditions and raises the dire mood.

Athens ( After a fire in refugee camp Moria in Lesbos,  which Pope Francis has visited in April, more than 3,000 residents have fled the hotspot on Monday night to other parts of the Aegean island. About 60 percent of the facilities were destroyed according to local information, by the fire, while nobody was injured.

The Greek police are convinced this is deliberate arson. 18 refugees and migrants were arrested, according to the Athens daily "Kathimerini" (Tuesday). They are expected to be responsible for the fires and for previous riots.

According to media reports, before the fire, refugees of different ethnicities had gotten into an argument. The mood was particularly fueled by rumors of an impending mass deportation of people back to Turkey. The precarious conditions in the overcrowded reception center played a role: On Lesbos, there are currently held around 5,650 refugees, while the accommodation there offers only room for 3,500.

Because of the fire camp residents were left homeless, and now according to estimates by the Mayor of Lesbos, Spyros Galinos, further escalation is threatened. He asked Athens for help; it must not ultimately be that only 15 municipalities throughout Greece should shoulder the entire refugee problem, Galinos criticized on Tuesday in a radio interview.

Moria reached the public's attention in the spring, as Pope Francis traveled to the camp and met refugees there. He spoke to them in solidarity with his visit, of courage and called on them to mutual affection and solidarity; surprisingly, he then took twelve Muslims from Syria on his return to Rome  from Syria, including six children; in June he took nine other residents of Moria; two of them were Christians.

Trans: Tancred


Saturday, April 16, 2016

Pope: For an Answer on "Amoris Laetitiae" Read Cardinal Schönborn's Synopsis

Francis expressed himself in another "flying press conference" not only on "Amoris laetitiae" but also on the Syrian refugee families who came along with him, sealing off of Europe and the meeting with Bernie Sanders

 Vatican City ( Pope Francis appealed to journalists that when reporting on his  Apostolic Letter "Amoris laetitita" they should also read the synopsis that Cardinal Christoph Schönborn had given at the press conference at the Vatican.  When asked by a journalist at the "flying press conference" on the flight from Lesbos to Rome on Saturday afternoon, if the document on the subject of marriage and family opened "new opportunities for the divorced and remarried," the Pope said "I could already say yes, but that would be too short a response. If you read the introduction by Cardinal Schönborn, who is a great theologian, to the text, then you have the answer," said Francis, [Apparently, Pope Francis said "I can say yes.  Period," in the Italian, "Io posso dire sì. Punto.."] according to Vatican Radio. Besides questions about "Amoris laetitiae" the journalists wanted to talk about the Arab refugees traveling in the Airbus - three Syrian families - the sealing off of Europe and the meeting with Bernie Sanders.

The Pope said that he was still moved in the wake of his visit to the refugee camp Moria in Lesbos: He had "to cry" about the encounters he experienced. Francis showed reporters pictures the children had painted and presented to him: "What the kids want is peace? Because they are suffering." On one of the pictures a weeping sun can be seen: "If even the sun were able to cry," said Francis, "then it would do us some good to shed. I would also invite the arms dealers to spend a day there in the camp." That would be "healing" for them.

In terms of the twelve traveling Syrian refugees who are Muslims, the pope insisted that it was "a purely humanitarian matter" and not to connect "any political speculation." The idea had come up a week ago with some of his colleagues in the Vatican, "and I accepted this immediately." He had "seen that it was the Holy Spirit who was speaking." The action was coordinated with the Greek and Italian authorities.

Francis quoted Mother Teresa: "It may be that this is just a drop in the sea, but the sea is not the same because of these drops." When selecting the refugees to take to Rome, he had "not made a choice between Christians and Muslims," ​​Francis said. "These three families had their papers in order and could get it. There were two Christian families on the list, but their papers were not in order. So no privilege." The twelve refugees he wished to take care of in the Vatican, were "all God's children".

On European refugee policy the Pope said: "I understand the people who feel a certain fear. I understand that we have great responsibility in receiving a great responsibility, and one of the aspects is how to integrate these people." He also reiterated that he considered walls as "no solution" and that bridges lead further. "We need to build bridges, but intelligently, with dialogue and integration." Europe must "urgently address their admissions policy, integration, growth, jobs and economic reforms."

All these points are "bridges" that reach into the future. "Europe must now return to find the ability to integrate, which it always had." That some "people born and raised in Europe," the "sons or grandsons of migrants", had committed the terrorist attacks in Paris and Brussels had, which shows in this view, "that there has been no integration policy."

On his decision to meet with the democratic US -Präsidentschaftskandidaten Bernie Sanders, Francis said that he met and greeted Sanders in the morning when he had left the residence of Santa Mart where he lives on an entire floor. The Marxist Pro-Abortion Sanders came to address Congress on the social encyclical "Centesimus Annus" in Rome.

"It was a simple greeting, nothign more. That's called manners, not meddling in politics. If someone thinks that a welcome is the same as mixing in politics, I recommend him a psychiatrist," said Francis word for word.

Another journalist asked about "Amoris laetitia," namely, why Francis had been hiding the subject of sacraments for the divorced and remarried in a footnote? The Pope explained that he had done so, "because it was already in Evangelii Gaudium," the programmatic Apostolic Letter of 2013. By "One of the last Popes" - Benedict XVI. was meant - "Has, as he once spoke of the council, there have actually been two of the Second Vatican Council, one of the Council of the media," said Francis about the totally different weights of certain issues.

So it will not probably not be registered, "that the the Communion is not the main problem of the family and Church." "We have a declining birth rate, at which one can only cry, lack of jobs and salaries, so Mom and Dad both have to work, and the children grow up alone. These are the big problems," Francis said.

Edit: and as usual, you're welcome LSNs.